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Garden Tour: Bell Peppers, Tomatoes, Jalapenos, Beans, Wild Amaranth and a Sale

Bell peppers in the garden

After years of living here, we finally planted an actual garden this year. These aren’t all of the plants, but they’re the ones that are doing the best so far. In the future, I’ll have to update as the others get more interesting, and share about all of my container plants, too.

Bell Peppers

I honestly have no idea how big I should let these get before harvesting. I know they will change color, so while I do enjoy green peppers, I figure letting at least a few turn red will let me know when they’re ready.

Bell peppers in the garden
Green bell peppers

Tomatoes

We planted a couple of varieties of tomato plants, then a neighbor gave us a few more, so we should have lots of tomatoes this year.

Huge green tomato
Green tomatoes

Those lovely tomatoes on the bottom got so big that they started to break the plant. Chris harvested them, and I did the yummiest thing I could think to do with green tomatoes: fry them.

Jalapenos

We have one jalapeno plant, and it’s an overachiever. We’ve already harvested four peppers and there’s about a dozen more currently on the plant.

Jalapeno plant
Jalapenos

You can see a few in the photo. There’s more hiding behind the leaves.

Pumpkin

The pumpkin was kind of an accident. We left an uncarved pumpkin sitting out front all winter. After the freeze in February it split and all the seeds were exposed. I through some soil on it and ignored it. Before long, we had about a million little pumpkin plants. I transplanted a few to the garden area and they’ve taken off.

Pumpkin plants
Pumpkin plants.

Some of the pumpkin plants left in the front were huge, but they took over the walkway and started getting damaged from the dogs walking through them, so we removed them. Hopefully these will continue to grow. It would be so cool to have pumpkins from our own garden this fall.

Beans

A few months ago, my clumsy self picked up a bag of pinto beans the wrong way and spilled a bunch on the floor. I decided to try to sprout them by soaking. When they sprouted, I planted them in the garden. These three plants are the survivors.

Pinto beans
Three little bean plants.

I have no idea if they need more support than just being allowed to climb the fence. I guess we’ll see.

Amaranth

The last major plant that’s taking off is, unsurprisingly, the amaranth. Amaranth literally grows as a weed around here, and we actually started our amaranth patch from weeds. The leaves are an awesome spinach replacement, and the seeds can be cooked or ground into flour. So far we’ve never harvested the seeds, but we do use the greens. It is important to note that they do contain a lot of oxalic acid, so you have to be careful of that. I’ve heard blanching helps to reduce the amount of oxalic acid, so I do that when cooking with amaranth.

Here’s a video of Chris harvesting some of our amaranth, filmed by Beckett.

What are your favorite things to plant? If you’ve been gardening this year, I would love to see.

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Shop Sale!

All items in my shop are 15% off until Friday, July 16, so please, check it out. Here’s just a few of the things you’ll find.

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Tree trimming

Since we moved into our house sixteen years ago, we’ve had an ongoing discussion about what to do with the massive tree behind the house. It was gorgeous and shaded the back quarter of the house, but it was also just a few feet away from the house, so there was always a risk of falling limbs and foundation damage.

Easter fun.

You can see it on the side at the back corner of the house and just behind the fence.

Yesterday, with nothing but a fourteen inch chainsaw, a loooong chain and me in the Zombie truck keeping the chain taut (and trying not to have a heart attack), Christopher made this happen:

Tree

No humans, homes, animals or Zombie trucks were harmed.

Tree vs Zombie

Hopefully the chainsaw survived well enough to handle the cleanup, too.

Tree climbing

I was worried it would be dark before the tree came down. I had to wait until this morning to take pictures because it fell at the last possible moment before nightfall.

That corner of the house looks naked now. But, we don’t have to worry about storms dropping it through the boys’ room anymore. It also clears the way for us to put up solar panels once we replace the roof.